Spicy Pork Dumplings

I’ve been on a dumplings roll lately.

Har gau, siu mai, gyoza and then sum… I just can’t get enough!

Spicy Pork Dumplings • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

So just 2 days after gorging myself with some of London’s best at the Chinese Food Festival, I found myself roaming the aisles of See Woo in Chinatown for some dumpling wrappers…

… and the rest, as they say, is dim-story!

Spicy Pork Dumplings • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

More seriously though, homemade dumplings are easier to make than you think (I should have listened to my friend Vivian on that point! and so much healthier than their take-away counterparts!

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Spicy Pork Dumplings • Recipe • Cake + Whisky

Carby, meaty, fragrant, sweet, salty and spicy all at once – these spicy pork dumplings are the ultimate comfort food and then sum!

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Spicy Pork Dumplings

Dumpling Feast at the Chinese Food Festival

Considering the enchanting weather we’ve been blessed with lately, with threatening cloudy skies garanteeing the wonderful alternance of pouring rain and roasting hot sunshine, you’ll have to come up with a pretty good excuse to convince to get out of the house.

Hint – Chinese food is an excellent one.

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

Which is how last weekend, I found myself by the River at the Chinese Food Festival, sampling all the goodies from London’s best Chinese food stalls and restaurants.

Obviously, there were noodles…

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + WhiskyDumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

Steamed buns.

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

Stir fry.

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + WhiskyDumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

And my favourite – dumplings.

And not just any dumplings – Ugly Dumpling!

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

Judging by the queues, I’m not the only one smitten with them!

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

I popped by the Lee Kum Kee stand to grab the best dim sum dipping sauce

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

… and commandeered a table to enjoy my loot with the most amazing views!

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

Foodies could also get an introduction to the basics of Chinese cuisine courtesy of the School of Wok and learn how to make a very simple Szechuan chicken stir fry – perfect for those rushed midweek dinners!

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + WhiskyDumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

And of course, all the secrets to dumplings folding!

Not that there’s much of a secret – seeing it done is helpful, but in the end, is all about practice.

Dumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + WhiskyDumpling Feast at London's Chinese Food Festival • Cake + Whisky

… which I definitely need more of.

Not that it’s really a problem as more dumpling folding means more dumpling eating – totally fine by me!

Dumpling Feast at the Chinese Food Festival

An Italian Hog Roast feast at Il Porco

Dans le cochon tout est bon.

Surely the masterminds behind House of Peroni & Bunga Bunga latest installation at L’Osservatorio are very familiar with this French proverb.

And they sure have proved it right with Il Porco: an Italian-style feast of all things porky.

Il Porco at Bunga Bunga with House of Peroni | Cake + Whisky Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 6 Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Don’t be fooled by the grand, elegant surroundings.

Il Porco is truly a party where nobody will look at you weirdly for pigging out. Au contraire!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Bunga Bunga’s head chef Alexis design Naray  has conceived an extraordinary three – course feast of pork delicacies to honour the noble and delizioso pig, served with Peroni Nastro Azzurro Alta.

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

More exciting yet, each dish is served with with an exclusive Peroni Nastro Azzurro cocktail.

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Starting with the excellent Peroni Limoni.

Limoncello, peach liquor, lemon juice and Peroni, garnished with basil & cracked black pepper.

A wonder reminiscent of end-of-summer parties and one I fully intend to reproduce sooner rather than later!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Served alongside some Aperitivo classics such as pork scratchings, olives, salami & focaccia.

No matter how delicious all those are (especially the bread), make sure you save some stomach real estate, because you’re in for a real feast!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Nose-to-tail porky goodies everywhere you look!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Pig cheek arancini, slow-cooked shredded pork shoulder, garlic & rosemary pork medallions, pancetta-wrapped pork & apple sausages, slow-cooked sticky ribs, as well as the whole roasted porchetta.

Plus some pig fat roasted potatoes, aubergine parmigiana, celeriac remoulade & baby carrots for good measure.

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Everything looks so good you won’t be able to wait to tuck in!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Piling it all up onto your plate will be a bit of a challenge, but one I was glad to take on!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

The accompagnying Peroni Speziato (Peroni Nastro Azzurro with orange, fennel, black pepper & rosemary) was the perfect match for this feast!

Even though it’s quite a surprising cocktail, very unusual, savoury and aromatic, it worked really well with the pork (which I suppose is not that surprising since it was inspired by traditional Italian porchetta recipes)!

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

And when you think you can’t manage any more food or you might just explode, they bring out the brownies.

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

But not just any brownies. Bacon brownies.

Dense, caramelised and deeply chocolate-y. No matter how full you are, you have to try them.

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

Alongside came some cute little maple syrup ice cream cones.

On a gondola. #partygoals

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

With its subtle taste, it was the perfect sweet ending to a night of feasting…

Il Porco by House of Peroni and Bunga Bunga 8

And if you happen to drop yours onto your brownie… well, let’s say that’s the only time dropping your ice cream cone might lead to a very happy ending!

Il Porco will happen once a month, starting this December, at The House of Peroni L’Osservatorio, Bunga Bunga.

Surely the most Italian hog roast in London! Viva Italia! 

 

 

An Italian Hog Roast feast at Il Porco